Frank Sinatra and Ava Gardner
Ava Gardner's first impression of her future husband, Frank, was that he was "arrogant, conceited, overpowering". Yet, of all the men she became romantically involved with, she would later pronounce him the "love of her life". The Hollywood actors began their relationship in 1949, after a memorable date on which, Ava reminisced: "We drank, we talked, and fell in love." Despite their feelings, their romance was never easy. At the beginning, Frank was still married, but the affair led his wife to file for divorce. He duly married Ava, but his career suffered when the Catholic church and Hollywood establishment berated him for leaving his wife. Conversely, her association with Sinatra caused Ava's star to soar - but success came at a price: she fell pregnant twice, yet felt bound to have terminations, despite longing for children. "MGM had all sorts of penalty clauses about their stars having babies," she lamented. In addition, each suffered from severe jealousy over the other's infidelities, and drank far too much each night. The couple divorced in 1957. In 1964, Frank declared: "She's the only woman I've ever been in love with in my whole life."